Department of Bioproducts and Biosystems

BiCMat members

The Biobased Colloids and Materials (BiCMat) group researches the fundamental and utilization aspects of renewable resources, including lignocellulose, proteins and other biopolymers. Here you will find the individuals (past and present) that make up the BiCMat research group. Each member of the group has their own research and area of expertise, so be sure to find out more about our researchers below.
A quirky group photo of BiCMat members taken by Dragon Flower Photo Studio

Group leader

Orlando Rojas

Prof. Orlando Rojas

I work with my team to uncover solutions that nature may provide to fulfill our material needs, by using, sustainably, resources that we find around us, including plants, marine shells and animals as well as biomass waste. Most of our work deals with small objects (colloids), including fibers, particles or other things with shapes that are not well defined. I hope to find disruptive ways to create positive societal impacts and to better our lives. I hope you have similar interests. If you do, I am more than open to collaborate and join efforts.

Postdoctoral fellows

Black and white portrait of Blaise Tardy.

Dr. Blaise Tardy

Surfactants and supracolloids

Black and white portrait of Maryam Borghei.

Dr. Maryam Borghei

Hybrid materials, carbon nanomaterials


Black and white portrait of Kati Miettunen.

Dr. Kati Miettunen

Academy Fellow, Energy harvesting

My research focuses on next generation solar devices that could prepared using easy manufacturing methods and cheap materials. Besides development of novel materials for flexible solar cells and up-scaling the technology, I study the lifetime issues of these technologies and sustainability of the approaches. Regarding the latter topic, my research lies in utilizing abundant and renewable materials such as wood-derivatives. Overall, I am interested in how increase of renewable energy production changes the future energy systems.


Black and white portrait of Long Bai.

Dr. Long Bai

Biocolloid-stabilized emulsions, food emulsions

My research is focused on the development of high-performance of emulsion system and product based on the naturally-derived materials. The label-friendly emulsions can be used in many fields that closely related to our daily life, such as foods, personal care, cosmetics. For future collaboration, the main point should be concentrated on finding a better and easier way to manufacture all natural emulsion systems.


Black and white portrait of Huan Siqi.

Dr. Huan Siqi

3D printing, composites

I am working on the project about 3D printing technology combining with nanocellulose to prepare hydrogels or aerogels with different shapes towards different applications.


Black and white portrait of Sanna Hokkanen.

Dr. Sanna Hokkanen

Lipid chemistry

Lipids in biomaterials is the topic of my deepest interest. I have worked within several different projects related to the lipids (determination of polar lipid partitioning in the dairy processes, production of microbial biodiesel from natural resources, production of health beneficial lipids by microbial means, understanding on the lipid metabolism of yeast affected by external fatty acids, examination of the cereal lipid behavior during processing, etc.). I am capable of carrying out various lipid analytic procedures and can apply the knowledge on different lipid systems. Please contact me if you would like to discuss the biobased lipids!


Black and white portrait of Bruno Mattos.

Dr. Bruno Mattos

Supracolloids, controlled release


Black and white portrait of Robertus Nugroho.

Dr. Robertus Nugroho

Biocolloidal powders


Black and white portrait of Johanna Majoinen.

Dr. Johanna Majoinen

Supracolloids and surface functionalization



Marco Beaumont

Dr. Marco Beaumont

Cellulsoe derivaties and chemcial modification

Black and white portrait of Jukka Hassinen.

Dr. Jukka Hassinen

Project Manager, FinnCERES Flagship

I am managing the Materials Bioeconomy Flagship FinnCERES funded by the Academy of Finland. FinnCERES is a competence cluster composed of researchers from Aalto University and VTT Technical Research Center Finland, who are working on lignocellulosics, sustainable materials and solutions for bioeconomy.

PhD Students

Black and white portrait of Alvaro Gonzalez Vogel.

Alvaro Gonzalez Vogel

Electrodialysis in fiber lines



Black and white portrait of Annamari Jukkola.

Annamari Jukkola

Separation of biocolloids, MFGM

I am a Doctoral Candidate in Aalto University and I hold a Master's degree from Food Sciences. As part of my PhD, I work with dairy innovations. In particular, I study the fractionation of milk and deployment of its lipid components and side streams. My aim is to expand the deployment of natural and functional ingredients and replace additives in food. At the moment, I have three peer-reviewed publications and more coming soon.

Black and white portrait of Annika Ketola.

Annika Ketola

Solid-stabilized foams

Black and white portrait of Janika Lehtonen.

Janika Lehtonen

Bacterial cellulose and biofabrication

I am interested in finding new applications for sustainable biobased materials. My research work is focused on bacterial cellulose and development of nanocellulose materials for water purification.

Black and white portrait of Karoliina Helanto.

Karoliina Helanto

Barrier solutions with biocolloids

Black and white portrait of Ling Wang.

Ling Wang

Carbonized lignin filaments

My work is focusing on biobased materials such as cellulose nanofibrils, lignin, chitin nanofibrils for functional applications like conductive, fire retardance and biosensors.

Black and white portrait of Meri Lundahl.

Meri Lundahl

Rheology and wet-spining of nanocelluloses

Rubina Ajdary

Rubina Ajdary

Superabsorbency and 3D printing

I am PhD student in the department of bioproducts and biosystems. I work in Biobased colloids and Materials research group (BiCMat) and I have currently two projects on going about fiber-based super-absorbents and also 3D printing of lignocellulosics.

Black and white portrait of Konrad Klockars.

Konrad Klockars

Structural color with CNC

In my research, I use tiny nanoparticles manufactured from a highly abundant and sustainable bio-resource, wood. They assemble into interesting nanostructures that resemble the DNA helix. Uniquely, this creates structural colour with the potential to replace conventional toxic colorants. I engineer the creation of these nanostructures to be applied as cheap coatings providing colour and durability.

Black and white portrait of Tero Kämäräinen.

Tero Kämäräinen

Analytical biocolloid characterization

Black and white portrait of Wenchao Xiang.

Wenchao Xiang

Particle co-stabilized foams

I'm a PhD student working in colloidal chemistry with renewable resources (cellulose, hemicellulose, lignin, chitin, bio-surfactants, etc.). My current research focuses on foam-related mechanisms (Foaming property, stabilization) and potential materials. By incorporating air into foam-based materials / systems, I could make light-weight materials with appreciable strength and insulation properties; and achieve efficient production with less raw materials and energy but more air (eg. foam forming fabrics). To further exploit foam-based materials / system, I would be interested in collaborating and working on bio-mimetic foam structure for functional applications in the future.

Black and white portrait of Solin Katariina.

Solin Katariina

Smart nanocellulose films

I am a doctoral candidate in Aalto University studying patterning of nanocellulose films and bioactivity. My expertise areas involve surface modification of renewable materials and controlling of non-specific protein adsorption. My studies have given me a broad understanding of wood chemistry but I have especially gained experience with cellulose nanofibrils and nanocrystals.

Bin Zhao B/W

Bin Zhao

Lignin carbon materials

I am a doctoral candidate in Aalto University developing advanced materail from lignin streams.

Ya Zhu BiCMat

Ya Zhu

Preparation and characterization of stimuli-responsive cellulose foams

I am a doctoral candidate in BiCMat working on structured food using nanocellulose and nanochitin

Eva Pasquier BiCMat

Eva Pasquier

Hybrid lignocellulose materials 

I am a doctoral candidate working between Grenoble and Helsinki, in the groups of Prof. Julien Bras in France and Orlando Rojas in Finland

Black and white portrait of Emily Facchine.

Emily Facchine

Rheology of nanocellulose suspensions
(co-advisor Prof. S. Khan, Chemical & Biomolecular Eng., NCSU, USA)

Black and white portrait of Soo Ah Jin.

Soo Ah Jin

Nanocellulose coatings
(co-advisor Profs. R. Spontak and S. Khan, Chemical & Biomolecular Eng., NCSU, USA)


Support Staff

Master and Summer students

Xuetong Shi, MSc student, Phase-changing Materials

Mikko Laine, MSc student, Biofabrication (co-advised with Prof. A. Frey)

Ishfaq Amal, MSc student, Foam phenomena

Noora Yau, ART Color & Material Design, Summer Researcher (advisor: Prof. J. Beidler)

Mahdi Rafiee, Piezo materials,  Summer Researcher

Michael Rale, Fat colloids, Summer Researcher

Olli-Pekka Lehtinen, Licentiate thesis

Visiting scholars 2018-2019

Prof. Michael Tam (Sabbatical Visiting Professor)
University of Waterloo, Canada

Nazanin Zanjanizadehezazi, 1 year
The University of Helsinki, visiting PhD student from Helder Santos group
Cell proliferation and biomedical systems from 3D printing

Dr. Caio Gomide Otoni, 9 months
University of Campinas, visiting postdoc
Nanocellulsoe and nanochitins in packaging applications

Filipe Vargas, 1 year
University of Campinas, visiting PhD Student
Nanocellulose and nanochitins biomaterials

Gabriela L. Berto, 1 year
Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil
High shear, high solids deconstruction of biomass

Carlos Eduardo Silveira da Silva, 1 year
Ciências Ambientais e Florestais, Brazil
Green biorefinery of industrial waste

Nabila Febriani, 5 months,
Textile Science and Technology, Shinshu University, Japan
Nanocellulose in polyolefin spinning

Antonio Maria Borrero Lopez (Erasmus), 3 months
Universidad de Huelva, Spain
Lignins for nanoparticles, oleogels and biofilms

Carmen Hervés, 2 months
Institute for Advanced Chemistry of Catalonia, Spain
Nanocellulose hybrids for energy applications

Yang Meng, 1 year
Beijing Forestry University, China
Phase changing materials from lignocellulose

Xiao Zhang, 2 year,
Nanjing Forestry University, China
Design functionalized lignin supramolecular microparticles

Niu Xun, 6 months
Nanjing Forestry University, China
Modification and application of nanocellulose

Prof. Haiming Li, 1 year
Dalian Polytechnic University, China
Nanocellulose in 3D printing

Dr. Rafael Grande, 1 year
Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil

Joice Kaschuk, PhD student, (finished Feb 2018), 6 months
University of São Paulo, São Carlos, Brazil
Solar cells

Liang Liu, PhD student (finished Feb 2018), 1 year
Nanjing Forestry University, China
Chitin nanofibers

Okada Keisuke (finished May 2018), 2 years
Visiting Researcher from Arakawa Chemical, Osaka, Japan
Nanocellulose in papermaking

Imani Monireh, PhD student, 1 year
Gorgan University of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Iran
Printing electronics


Biobased Colloids and Materials (BiCMat)

Group led by Professor Orlando Rojas


BiCMat Publications (external link)

The full list of publications by BiCMat members to date.

Publications. Image: Aino Huovio.
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